To be sure, civil rights are called rights because they should not be up for a vote. They are rights conferred at birth to all people. But, having said that, I am moved by how the nation of Ireland voted overwhelmingly to stand tall for marriage equality. They lead the world with 62% of the voters supporting equality and civil rights—almost a 2:1 vote in support. All but one of the nation’s electoral areas voted in support of gay marriage.
We were in Ireland 6 years ago when the nation was shaken to its roots by the scandal uncovered in the Catholic Church. The deeply Catholic nation was outraged. People were angry. I can not help but think that this nation’s vote for equality was just as much a vote against the hideous hypocrisy of the Catholic church, voting against fear and prejudice.
The gracious ways in which the opposition conceded defeat in this campaign should be a lesson to the US and certainly stands in direct contrast to the hateful, war-mongering, inflamatory, “murder-in-the-streets” rhetoric that has been rampant in this nation as the SCOTUS takes up this issue for us.
One final observation: the nation has an unusually high percentage of young people. Young people seem vastly more enlightened than the old guard and overwhelmingly support civil rights for everyone.
We share a lot in common with our Irish friends. As the old guard in the Republican party in this nation dies off, the conservatives in the US should be paying very carefully attention to what is going on around them.